December 29, 2007,
M.W. asks from Bentonville, AR on December 13, 2007
Need Help with How to Have the "Sex" Talk with My Kids....9 & 6 - Bentonville,AR
I know that I want to be honest with them, but I honestly do not know what to say. No one ever gave me "the talk" I was just told don't do it once I was older. My husband is having a hard time with it as well. Our don 9 came home one day and said he knew what sex was and that everyone talked about it at school, but when we asked him to tell us what he thought it was he didn't want to talk to us about it. I want him to feel comfortable and he usually does. He just isn't a big talker about his feeling and never has been. I don't even know where to start. I know it will be quick and painless more than likely and they will just be like ok and go away. Advice is very much appreciated!
1 mom found this helpful
C.N. answers from Baton Rouge on December 14, 2007
If he brought the subject up, then he does want information, even if he isn't omfortable asking for it directly. I'd start by telling him that you want to make sure that what he heard at school ois corect, because sometimes other kids don't have all the facts straight, and you want to make sure he does. If he still isn't comfortable telling you what he heard (and part of that discomfort may come from associating behavior he thinks is gross with you and his dad), then start with the basics. Sex is one of the many ways that adults express their love for each other in a physical way, and that sometimes it results in a baby being conceived. Kids are hitting puberty at younger ages than ever, so it's quite possible that your 9-year-old is in its early stages. You will need to telll him what changes to expect in his own body - facial hair, hair in his armpits and crotch, his voice changing, unprovoked erections, wet dreams. Those are all normal parts of the change from boy to man, and he needs to know that. As his sex drive begins to develop, he will masturbate. It's up to you to decide whether he will see this as the normal activity that it is, or as reason to be ashamed of his changing body.
1 mom found this helpful
J.K. answers from Birmingham on December 14, 2007
To help you with the talk, try the books Almost Twelve by Kenneth Taylor and Susie's Babies (Susie is a hamster) by
E. Margaret Clarkson. You might also want to look into Preparing Your Son for Every Man's Battle. Some information you may want to present later; some now. Leave the door open for on-going discussion, and set the entire talk in the context of morality. It might happen in small bits, rather than all at once and that's fine. The books can make good follow-up.
B.R. answers from Chattanooga on December 16, 2007
My first inclination here is to suggest being very down-to-earth and casual about it with him. If you seem uncomfortable or embarrassed about it, he will be, too.
Also, people have different values systems that need to be taken into account when raising your children, particularly when it comes to education about sex.
Now, I have a couple of friends with a 12 year old daughter. They have raised her as a very independent spirit and they are very open-minded and upfront people. Their daughter has known about sex for a very long time, as they have always answered her questions as accurately and openly as possible. They offer her information on topics that would make most adults cringe. For example, she's aware of what masturbation is. They let her have time to grow up. As a result, they have a very informed daughter who makes very well-thought-out decisions and is very responsible and has integrity. Hard to imagine for a child her age, but she has truly impressed me.
With boys it's different than with girls. Talk to your husband and figure out what information you want to share with your son. You may also talk to each other about how you found out about sex and what myths you were told when you were little. You can use all of this information when talking to your child. You can strike up the conversation yourselves when it's convenient by offering some of the silly things you remember being told as kids about sex or tell him how you found out... or what you heard from friends. It will open the floor to the conversation and put him at ease because you will be trading stories, not giving him a big, uncomfortable talk about sex. Once you have established open communication, you can proceed to laugh over the silly things you heard and then tell him what the truth is. Use clinical terms, if you need to, or research different methods for talking about it. ...Or, like another mom suggested, then you can suggest going to Huntsville Hospital to find out what the real truth is. After the walk-through, on the way home, ask him questions -- "what was the most interesting, weird, unexpected, gross thing they taught you?" Using "boy" terminology will bring the conversation down to his level and make him feel comfortable. This way, he sees that he can talk to his parents -- you guys become more regular people to him where sex is concerned and he gets the facts from a reliable source all at the same time. Win-win situation!
K.S. answers from Macon on December 15, 2007
Hi M., I am not sure what to tell you to say to your children but I am sure that if you go to a Christian bookstore you can find the advise you are looking for on this topic. My kids are only 3 1/2 and 2 so I ahve a little while to worry about it. Best of luck.
M.G. answers from Huntsville on December 13, 2007
Wow I know this can be hard, there are lots of great books out there that can help you with your discussion and I agree that if you keep your sense of humor it will help. Make sure to tell your children that it is important that they talk to you because they will most likely get the wrong info from their friends. At 9 and 6 you can keep things very basic I have been talking to my children about their bodies and ect since they were very little, sometimes at dinner I just start asking them random questions and not just about sex, but other topics like drugs ect. But I keep it light, funny and always tell them that you will always tell them the truth and you will listen when they need to talk, sometimes it might take a while to win their confidence but keep trying it is worth it. Good Luck
C.D. answers from Clarksville on December 14, 2007
I highly recommend the book "Boys, Girls, and Body Science" by Meg Hickling. I bought mine through amazon.com. I researched many books and this is the one that I felt dealt with the subject on a level appropriate for my 8 year old daughter. With a couple of early signs of puberty (like needing to use deodorant) I knew it was time for "the talk."
The story line of "Boys, Girls, and Body Science" is that a nurse visits a school classroom where she talks about boys and girls bodies in relation to making and having a baby. All pictures are cartoon like illustrations. The kids in the class giggle and say "yuck" which makes it comfortable for your child to react honestly too. The teacher points out that scientists say "interesting!"
A few of the others books I looked at had tidbits on homosexuality or masturbation- things I didn't want to introduce as matter of fact. The only moral issue "Body Science" gets into is that it says "some families say that you should be married first, before you have sex. You need to know the rules for your family." I thought that was good and left it wide open for parents to share their values.
PS- I also have a 6 yr old but haven't shared this with him yet as there haven't been any questions come up.
C.W. answers from Huntsville on December 14, 2007
Hi there! Not sure where you're located but Huntsville Hospital is supposed to have an excellent program that will do this for you! Apparently you go in with the child and they do all the talking, explaining, etc. I have spoken with two parents personally who have done this and said it was very "non-embarassing" and at least one of them has a son who has sworn off teen-age sex! Maybe you could contact your local hospital and see if they have something similiar.
T.M. answers from Memphis on December 13, 2007
Since it hasn't come up in converstaion and it is something you really want to make sure your children here from you, at the dinner table ask your children "Do you know where babies come from?". And you will have to insist that some one give you an answer. I use terms like Babies come from love, mommies & daddies make love, Girl parts and Boy parts fit together, God has to help because lots of thing can go wrong. If you let yourslef laugh, then the conversation will take on an ease and life of it's own. Good Luck.
A.B. answers from Birmingham on December 29, 2007
This may or may not be helpful depending on your beliefs, but I have heard great things about it. We have four little boys so we aren't there yet, but we are planning to do this in the future. It is a biblical approach to the issues and comes in a kit designed to be used on a weekend adventure.
Here is the info in case you are interested...
Get away with your preteen or teenager for a one-on-one adventure of a lifetime! Passport 2 Purity will guide you and your son or daughter through biblical principles for life's most difficult challenges; including dating and those other difficult topics to discuss. Let Dennis and Barbara Rainey lead you through an encouraging do-it-yourself retreat full of discovery, communication and fun.
The kit includes:
CDs featuring Dennis and Barbara Rainey.
Commemorative passport and seals.
T.B. answers from New Orleans on December 15, 2007
I have been reading the other advice and personally I didnt read any books. I talk to my child so she can hear the words from my own mouth. Take what you need and throw the rest away. You know your child better than anyone, since he is asking you have to be honest, age appropriate, but then again what is age appropriate. Children are having babies younger and younger these days so we as parents have to educate our children and be honest. I'd rather be honest when she is asking then feel uncomfortable and not sure what to say. You know he is probably speaking with his friedns which is bad advice, so its our responsibility as parents to talk straight talk to our children. 9 isnt like 4, so he is much smarter than we think. My daughter is 12, and I promise you I had a talk with her when she was 7 because at that time I was pregnant with my 2nd child. The funny thing was that I didnt tell her that I was pregnant, didnt even think much about it, she just said one morning while we were all eating breakfast"mommy are you having a baby". I tell you M. my husbnad and I just looked in awe, didnt know what to say about how she even knew anything about her. I underestimated her becaue of her age and thinking she isnt paying attention. That was the signal for me to talk real talk.
Good luck its never easy, but since he brought it up the door is open.
N.P. answers from Knoxville on December 14, 2007
I had "the talk" with my son and daughter at different times - i.e. we talked whenever I was with them one on one. It wasn't just once. There are great books that ease them into the subject without many pictures. Of course, I took a Biblical approach and also referenced what Billy Grahamn said. The one thing that I like is to emphasize that this is private and that's why we call some of our body parts "private" and that it's special and not something that kids should go around talking about casually.
M.M. answers from Texarkana on December 13, 2007
Answer what they ask very simply and honestly. You don't have to give some big, long, drawn-out explanation, just give them the bare facts and they will ask for more if they need it...Also, I gave my daughter a book called Almost Twelve which answered all of her questions and my nephew used that book too. If you are uncomfortable or your kids are uncomfortable, call before the next checkup and ask the pediatrician to help.